How to get a good night’s sleep

sleep
Getting enough sleep has a positive effect on everything from brain function and heart health to emotional well being.

It improves our memory and alertness, curbs inflammation, reduces stress and obesity and generally helps us to live healthier and longer! While we sleep our brain is working to renew our cells (hello beautiful skin!), repair muscle and tissue, build new neural pathways and complete a whole host of other jobs vital for good health! Unfortunately in today’s society disrupted sleep patterns are becoming increasingly common.

Reasons why sleep may be eluding you…

Blue light
The light emitted from the screens of our televisions, computers and other electronic devices is known as blue light – and although it can be beneficial during the day when we need to be alert, it can be highly disruptive when you’re trying to wind down! Engaging with blue light within the last two to three hours before bedtime can interfere with your circadian rhythm (your body rhythm) dramatically and can be a major cause of sleep deprivation.

Beat the bedtime blues by switching off your screens two to three hours before bedtime and sticking to dim red lighting.


Eating the wrong foods at the wrong time!
Many of us have incredibly hectic lifestyles – balancing long working hours in stressful jobs with busy social lives. It’s easy to see why so many of us collapse on the sofa in front of the television with some quick and easy food before rolling straight in to bed. Not only will the blue light from the TV keep you awake, but your body will be trying to digest all the food you just ate – meaning you’ll either wake in the night once your digestive system has done its job, or the food simply won’t be digested properly!

There’s a lot to be said for the adage ‘Breakfast like a King, Lunch like a Prince, and Dinner like a Pauper’. Making your last meal a light and healthy one at least two to three hours before bed will give your body the best chance of winding down without digestive interruptions!

As well as blue light and digestive issues, there are a host of other causes of sleep deprivation. Noise and light pollution, alcohol, caffeine and stress can all have part to play- as can lack of (or too much!) exercise. EMFs (electromagnetic fields) omitted by our mobile phones and Wi-Fi routers are also increasingly being shown to impact sleep patterns and health in general…

If you’re having trouble sleeping try some relaxing yoga, a warm bath and a good book to help your body unwind – and get in touch with your local complementary therapist!

Guest Post from The Ark. They offer a range of therapies such as acupuncture, kinesiology, reflexology and the Bowen technique. Which all could help with sleep deprivation.

Visit the ‘sleep’ section of their online natural pharmacy at The Ark

There’s a lot to be said for the adage ‘Breakfast like a King, Lunch like a Prince, and Dinner like a Pauper.

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